Hiking Trail Conditions Report
Peaks East Huntington, South Huntington, Mt. Huntington, West Huntington, NH
Trails: Bushwhack, Hancock Notch Trail
Date of Hike
Date of Hike: Friday, September 15, 2023
Parking/Access Road Notes
Parking/Access Road Notes: Parked at hancock notch trailhead. 
Surface Conditions
Surface Conditions: Dry Trail 
Recommended Equipment
Recommended Equipment:  
Water Crossing Notes
Water Crossing Notes: all trivial 
Trail Maintenance Notes
Trail Maintenance Notes:  
Dog-Related Notes
Dog-Related Notes: Champ and Tucker had fun. The thick stuff is so much easier for them than us hoomans. 
Bugs: none 
Lost and Found
Lost and Found: found and packed out a mylar balloon, because of course 
Comments: Parked at Hancock Notch and road walked the Kanc to the right bend of the horseshoe. Entered the woods at the eastern end of the guardrail. Generally tried to follow Liam's route.

Slow going up to East. Took almost two hours. I stayed to the SE of the minor drainage, that seemed to separate some spruce from not spruce, which worked OK, but I ended up getting higher on the southern knob than I expected. Tried to contour at about 3100, and it was just unrelenting. Rare to find a spot I could take 5 steps without having to think about avoiding an obstacle. West straight up the western side of the summit. Just above 3200 near the summit was a real think band of stubs, the kind you can't just push through. Ended up crawling for a bit. A slog.

From East to South wasn't so bad. I headed NW off the summit to avoid the same crawling, aiming to cross the drainage around 3000 and ascend up the eastern edge of South. Steep and mildly thick, but definitely better than the crawling on the ascent. Drainage was flowing nicely and I refilled on water. Never truly open on this route, but never awful either. Made it to South in 1:45, navigating some easy cliff bands as I ascended the ridge, aiming to intersect around 3450.

South to Main was surprisingly not that bad. Went right through the col, erring a bit to the NE through the col, then to the SW once ascending again. Only 45 mins for this stretch, which included having to backtrack 100 yards looking for the cannister - the only tricky cannister of the day.

Main to West I was prepared for the worst based on Liam's comments, but was pleasantly surprised. I followed the ridge down to about 3400, then aimed just south of west to pass the col to the north around 3120. This worked surprisingly well, and I was ascending again before I knew it. Some boulders/minor cliff bands towards the summit here, but very manageable. Took 70 minutes from Main to West.

I had initially planned to follow the SW ridge down, but tired of whacking I opted for the more direct WNW ridge, which proved to be a great decision. I aimed to follow the ridge as long as it was pronounced, then for the minor eastern bend in Hancock Notch trail. Found the most open woods of the day, with some steep but short stretches. Some branches still, but can just plow right through these when descending. Some lovely birches in places too. Stayed to the south of the drainage and before I knew it, hit a campsite on the drainage then trail, glorious trail. Only took 60 minutes from the West to the Trailhead, and certainly the easiest stretch of the day.

7:00 total for the day, 30 mins of which were Kanc road walk.

Name: Big Al Dente 
Date Submitted
Date Submitted: 2023-09-16 
Link: https:// 
Bookmark and Share Disclaimer: Reports are not verified - conditions may vary. Use at own risk. Always be prepared when hiking. Observe all signs. Trail conditions reports are not substitutes for weather reports or common sense.

Copyright 2009-2024, All Rights Reserved